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Obstetrics and Gynecology International
Volume 2009, Article ID 819380, 2 pages
Case Report

Elevated Middle Cerebral Artery Peak Systolic Velocity in a Nonanemic Fetus with Alpha-Thalassemia Trait

Swedish Medical Center, Denver, CO 80113, USA

Received 13 May 2009; Accepted 22 October 2009

Academic Editor: Gian Carlo Di Renzo

Copyright © 2009 Kent Heyborne. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Elevated middle cerebral artery peak systolic velocity (MCA-PSV) has been reported in nonanemic fetuses following fetal transfusion, and has been attributed to a major population of red blood cells (RBCs) with an adult mean corpuscular volume (MCV) in the fetal circulation. Reported here is an analogous case of elevated MCA-PSV with a normal fetal hematocrit and relative fetal microcytosis due to fetal -thalassemia trait. Case. Ultrasound findings concerning for early hydrops prompted measurement of MCA-PSV, which was elevated. Cordocentesis revealed fetal microcytosis with a normal hematocrit which proved to be due to fetal -thalassemia trait inherited from the mother. Conclusion. This case provides another example of elevated MCA-PSV with normal hematocrit and microcytosis, here due to fetal -thalassemia trait. This finding provides support for the observation that MCA-PSV may be influenced by hematological indices other than the fetal hematocrit.